The Dolphin Centre gym team have been working with customers for years to get the results they want from exercise. Please read some of their stories below:
Mel had been overweight for a long time; it was getting her down – she no longer had the energy to run around after her children. She desperately wanted things to change.
A visit to the local surgery changed everything. The doctor recommended ‘Exercise on Prescription’ and referred her to the Dolphin Centre.
Mel wasn’t new to the Dolphin Centre, she regularly went swimming with her children.
Mel was assigned to Vicky Grant in May 2015 who then set her up on a programme of healthy eating and exercise. Mel was also advised to write a food diary and Vicky would monitor this to help make recommendations, such as food swaps to keep her on track.
Feeling down about yourself can leave you feeling low in energy, which may also put you off being active. Regular exercise helps improve your mood and it’s especially useful for people like Mel who suffer from low moods.
Mel enjoyed going swimming with her children at the Dolphin Centre but wanted to do a more social activity for herself. As well as continuing swimming at the Dolphin Centre, Mel joined the Aqua Aerobics session with Keith on a Sunday evening, which she loves. It is a fun way to keep fit and make new friends. Mel felt really comfortable attending these classes.
Mel’s training plan consists of a variety of exercises, such as the bike, treadmill, cross trainer and a few weights. Mel has also started running on the treadmill now that she feels comfortable and trains for 1 & ½ hours, three times a week along with the weight loss group, Slimming World.
Clothes shopping was always a dread for Mel but now she loves it and fits into a size 18.
She used to wear dresses over the knees to cover her legs but not anymore – her wardrobe has completely changed!
Even her knee high boots fit perfectly now that her calves are smaller.
Mel feels so much more motivated, focussed and confident and has so much more energy to be able to run around with her children. She can focus on her wedding day being the best day of her life as she prepares to get married at the Dolphin Centre in August.
She has made new friends, is much more sociable and feels the Dolphin Centre gym is very welcoming.
Mel feels like a new person – she has never felt so good!
“Don’t be afraid; just do it!”
Mel has lost 4 ½ stone so far since May 2015.
Always consult with your G.P. before exercising
Joanne joined the Dolphin Centre Gym in October 2015.
She wanted to feel better about herself, lose weight and meet new people. Joanne has always been into fitness and loved the social side of visiting fitness centres and gyms but with family commitments and work circumstances this slowly started to take a back seat.
With a husband in the Army and two children, Joanne has always found it hard to maintain consistency with what she ate and also finding the time and place to work out.
After Joanne married, her family were constantly on the move, in and out of hotels and moving to different towns. Joanne was out of a routine, eating badly and wasn’t exercising - her weight slowly crept up and she found herself uncomfortable and unhappy with her body.
In August 2015 Joanne moved to Darlington and joined the Dolphin Centre Gym in October 2015 with her induction with Stuart. She was given a structured routine with a mix of cardiovascular exercises and weight training.
Since October 2015 Joanne has been working out at the Dolphin Centre Gym weekly.
With an achievable training programme and a member of Slimming World, Joanne has lost a considerable amount of weight and feels amazing!
Joanne was 15 stone when she joined the Dolphin Centre Gym in October 2015 and she is now only 10 stone (June 2016). She would like to reach her personal goal of 9 ½ stone by the end of summer and then maintain this weight in the future.
Exercising and keeping fit is really important to Joanne, it makes her feel really uplifted and gives her lots of energy and makes her feel more active and motivated when it comes to playing with her two children. Feeling fitter helps to keep her children happy and active.
At the Dolphin Centre Gym Joanne has been given continued support and guidance from the two Instructors, Stuart and Julie. They are always on hand to help her with new exercises or to motivate her on the days she doesn’t feel up to it. Another Dolphin Centre Gym instructor who has had a huge influence on Joanne is Shirley, who works out regular in the gym. She works really hard and you can see the results – Shirley’s motivational words stay with her and help keep her going.
"It may be hard to start at first but stay focussed and keep going – you will get there!"
"Don’t be embarrassed about your size, just be yourself’
Why the Dolphin Centre Gym?
"The Dolphin Centre Gym is well equipped with everything that is needed to work the whole body, along with great instructors on hand throughout your session for guidance, support and motivation. Staff are all very friendly and make you feel really welcome"
Paul has been on his exercise journey since November 2014.
Paul wanted to change his lifestyle, improve his fitness and lose weight. Read on to find out his amazing journey so far.
Starting Weight 21 stone, 10 Lbs Current Weight 17 stone, 10 Lbs Weight Loss 4 stone
“I was constantly worried that my weight and that my unhealthy lifestyle would lead me to an early grave. I made the decision to join the gym to lose weight, improve my fitness and change my lifestyle for the better. “
“I started exercising at the end of November 2014 and decided to become a member at the Dolphin Centre gym. I have never looked back.”
Paul has had some great support from the gym instructors, and has been working closely with Shirley.
Shirley is “really motivational, supportive and she always has a smiling face. The Healthy Darlington staff have also really supported me, providing me with advice which included a referral to Slimming World. I am always made to feel welcome if I need any further advice and don’t feel uncomfortable at all.”
Paul’s friends and family have been really supportive and proud with his achievements so far.
Many people have noticed the difference in Paul and he is always being asked how much weight he has lost.
His two sisters have been really motivated by Paul’s progress that they too have taken out gym memberships to get fit.
“Since joining the gym I am so much happier, fitter and more confident. Exercising has had an effect on all areas of my life and my work. I have reduced my drinking and I now swim 3 times a week. My flexibility has increased and the arthritis in my ankle has really improved since losing weight.”
“I love being in the Dolphin Centre Gym, it is a really positive environment for me. The equipment is great, especially ‘My Wellness’ app which I have downloaded to my mobile phone to track my progress. I also use Swimtag when I am in the swimming pool which tracks my progress in the water and continues to motivate me to do better. Kayleigh on poolside has been great in encouraging me to work that little bit harder, providing me with advice on swimming techniques which has really helped.”
“My membership package is really good value for money and I have the freedom to use all the available facilities. I believe that the staff are a key reason for my new love of exercise and are definitely a big reason why I have made it this far on my journey to a better lifestyle.”
Paul’s advice for others would be that you have to want to change, you can’t do it half-heartedly. To achieve what he has so far has required both healthy food choices and physical activity. Paul says that “it’s all about changing your lifestyle.”
Congratulations Paul on your incredible 4 stone weight loss in just 6 months from all of your friends at the Dolphin Centre.
Always consult with your G.P. before exercising.
Graham started at the Dolphin Centre 8 years ago after being referred by his GP to attend the Exercise on Referral Programme. Graham was referred to the team as he needed specialist knowledge to support his health improvement. The Gym Team have worked closely with Graham offering supervision and advice designed specifically for him. He has continued to attend the gym and joined as a member 4 years ago. Attending 2 to 3 times a week is a routine for Graham, which he is committed to after experiencing the really positive benefits of exercise.
Before starting the gym, Graham was a stone heavier, had limited strength, was unable to exercise safely and was reliant on his wheelchair. Now due to his increase in fitness he has gained muscular strength and endurance and has progressed from pushing his wheelchair around the gym to independently accessing all the cardio machines, especially the treadmill. His programme includes a 20 min walk, which is amazing progress.
Graham loves the feeling he gets when working out and he knows he is so much fitter than ever before. It’s vital for Graham that he keeps his body as strong as possible and he is committed to continuing and striving to improve.
Graham explained to us that he felt that without his commitment to coming to the gym, he believes his story would be very different and there would be a strong possibility that he would have had to undergo several operations to his spine.
Graham has always felt really supported and says all the team are really friendly and helpful. He still enjoys being pushed by both the team and his personal goals. He feels he has grown as a person and he is a more positive person now.
His family are so proud and supportive of his achievements, they can see the difference that the regular exercise has made to Graham’s quality of life. The only downside is he gets grumpy if he misses a session!
The new refurbishment has made moving round the gym much easier in his wheelchair and the addition of more adaptable equipment now means he can use more things than ever before. He loves that he is seen as an important person but isn’t singled out due to his disability; everyone is treated with the same kindness and a friendly welcome. Graham also values the social aspect with both the staff and customers which makes it such a nice place to be.
His advice – Come and try it out, you’ll feel better and reap some excellent benefits too that could be life changing.